Gabriel Ludlow, Viscount Everhart will never marry, and thus is sure to win the bachelor’s wager against his friends. Assuming, of course, that his deepest secret—a certain letter containing a marriage proposal made in a moment of passion—doesn’t surface. After all, without Calliope Croft to tempt him, there’s no danger in losing. Or in falling in love.
Calliope wants revenge. Five years ago, an anonymous love letter stole her heart and ultimately broke it. Now, Casanova has struck again, and Calliope vows to unmask the scoundrel, stopping him from breaking any more hearts. Yet, time and again, Gabriel distracts her from her task, until she can no longer deny that something about him calls to her…
Gabriel was a fool to deny the depth of his feelings for Calliope, but the threat that kept him from her five years ago remains. Now, he must choose between two paths: break her heart all over again or finally succumb to loving her… at the risk of losing everything.
An excerpt from The Elusive Lord Everhart
Sweat dripped from Gabriel’s brow as he neared the top of the circular staircase. If he’d have known that hopping on one foot up stairs took such skill, he would have added it to his regimen ages ago. Apparently, neither broadswords nor boxing had anything on hopping. He suddenly had a new respect for his younger half-sister, Raena, and her tendency to hop and skip from one room to the next—as long as she wasn’t caught by her mother.
“Only months away from town and you’ve already gone soft, I see,” a familiar voice called up from the open doorway of the map room. But it wasn’t Montwood or Danvers.
In bewildered disbelief, Gabriel ducked his head to peer down behind him. “Croft?”
“The one and the same,” Griffin Croft answered. “When we were last at Gentleman Jackson’s saloon, you knocked me on my arse. I thought I’d return the favor with an unexpected visit.”
“You have succeeded.” Gabriel turned to make his way back down, one step at a time. Croft and he were more sparring partners than friends. In fact, this was their first social call of any sort. One did not typically make friends with the man who’d blackmailed you and threatened to end your life, after all.
Normally, Gabriel wasn’t of a superstitious nature. Yet, after the drunken wager he’d made last night—along with his thoughts concerning Croft’s sister—he was beginning to wonder if he ought to be.
Then again, there was a perfectly obvious reason for the visit. “I imagine you’ve come to see how your cousin fares.”
An interview with Vivienne Lorret
How long have you been writing historical romance, and what inspired you to get into this genre?
I wrote my first full-length historical romance twelve years ago. For me, historical romance was a first love. When I was a teenager, novels from Jude Devereaux, Judith McNaught, and Johanna Lindsey opened a new world to me, shaping my lifelong fanaticism of this genre.
What gave you the idea for your latest book?
I’d already written part of Calliope’s story in her brother’s book, Finding Miss McFarland. So, her backstory had been spinning around in my mind. I knew Calliope enjoyed reading romances, but had given up on finding her own love after suffering heartbreak during her first Season. I also knew that Everhart had something to do with it.
Then, like magic, the wheels began to turn until the idea of the Casanova letters was born and the gears of the story clicked into place.
Who are some of your favorite romance writers or other literary inspirations?
There are so many amazing authors in the world that it would be impossible to list them all. My auto-buys are Eloisa James, Tessa Dare, Julia Quinn, Lisa Kleypas, Sarah Maclean, Kristan Higgins, Jill Shalvis, Rachel Gibson, Candis Terry, Ellie Macdonald, Cody Gary… just to name a few. Also, I love Jane Austen’s work, in addition to Ray Bradbury and Ernest Hemingway, among others.
Describe your typical writing routine. Where do you usually write? How many words/pages per day? Do you keep set hours? What does your workspace look like?
My office space is located in our three-season room. Unfortunately, since our Midwest winter was so harsh this year, I’ve relocated to our dining room and haven’t quite left yet. I don’t know how I’ll ever go back to a regular-sized desk.
My day starts with a smile and a fist bump from Pinky (my laptop), and an enormous mug of tea. Then I’ll write until I can’t write anymore and my frontal lobe starts to throb. I usually work a good eight hours a day, and this includes the social media stops, scheduling posts, and research. In deadline mode, I’ll work from sunup to sundown, growling at my family if they venture too near, or ask for dinner, or laundry. If they bring me a Starbucks Chai Latte, however, they are allowed to speak.
Do you have any favorite foods or beverages that help keep your creativity flowing?
I don’t think this would surprise anyone, but on occasion, I drink tea. I also have a killer cinnamon scone recipe on my Facebook page.
Do you have any writing superstitions or rituals when starting (or ending) a new book?
It may sound strange, but I always trim my fingernails short before I start a book. And when I finish and I can’t quite settle down from the writing high, I crochet a travel mug cozy. I know what you’re thinking… and yes, I should probably stop partying so hard.
What do you think makes for a sizzling romance?
Chemistry + anticipation = sizzle
The hero and heroine want each other, but there is something keeping them apart. It sounds fairly standard, but it always works.
What’s the most unusual or interesting question you’ve ever been asked by a fan? And what was your response?
I’ve been asked if I write from my own experiences. Since I write Regency romance, the question usually makes me smile and feel somewhat like a time traveler. Not only that, but if I look that old, I really need to start coloring the gray out of my hair.
If you were in charge of adapting a scorching summer romance for the big screen, what book would you like to see made into a movie, and who would you pick to star as the male and female leads?
Since I have a book coming out this summer, The Maddening Lord Montwood, I would choose that one. Colin Farrell would make the perfect Lucan Montwood: the charming rake with the dark past. With a pair of brass-rimmed spectacles, Sophia Bush would make an amazing Frances Thorne: buttoned-up and disapproving, but with secrets of her own.
What romantic advice would you give ladies who are seeking to snag their own Elusive Lord?
Be yourself. Never bite your tongue. Believe that you deserve a happily ever after of your own. Oh, and if you can find a matchmaking dog, that always helps.
About the Author
USA Today bestselling author Vivienne Lorret loves romance novels, her pink laptop, her husband, and her two sons (not necessarily in that order… but there are days). Transforming copious amounts of tea into words, she is proud to be an Avon Impulse author of works including: Tempting Mr. Weatherstone, The Wallflower Wedding Series, and the Rakes of Fallow Hall series.
Avon is giving away a digital bundle, including Winning Miss Wakefield, Daring Miss Danvers, and Finding Miss MacFarland. Enter to win using the Rafflecopter widget below, and don’t forget to follow the rest of the tour here.
1. How long have you been writing historical romance, and what inspired you to get into this genre?
2. What gave you the idea for your latest book?
3. Who are some of your favorite romance writers or other literary inspirations?
4. Describe your typical writing routine. Where do you usually write? How many words/pages per day? Do you keep set hours? What does your workspace look like? (If you’d like to share a picture of your space too, that would be awesome.)
5. Do you have any favorite foods or beverages that help keep your creativity flowing?
6. Do you have any writing superstitions or rituals when starting (or ending) a new book?
7. What do you think makes for a sizzling romance?
8. What’s the most unusual or interesting question you’ve ever been asked by a fan? And what was your response?
9. If you were in charge of adapting a scorching summer romance for the big screen, what book would you like to see made into a movie, and who would you pick to star as the male and female leads? (And why?)
10. What romantic advice would you give ladies who are seeking to snag their own Elusive Lord?